As per my new blog schedule, I was due to post a book review on Monday, which is now a two-weekly event on my blog. However, when I finally got home from work on Sunday and sat down with my laptop to write my review I suddenly realised something…I had nothing to review. It has actually taken me over two weeks to read a book, a fact that gives rise to the question: WHAT THE HELL IS HAPPENING TO ME?
Once upon a time I could devour even the thickest book within a matter of days – in fact the longest Harry Potter book (The Order of the Phoenix) lasted about three days in my greedy little hands before I was anxiously waiting for the next book to be released! So how come it has now taken me over two weeks to finish a moderately thick book which I just so happen to be really enjoying (The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson, in case you’re wondering!)?
Whilst I still enjoy reading as much as ever, I have definitely noticed the rate at which I read books decline of late, and whilst I see other bloggers posting multiple reviews a week and wonder at how they have managed to read so much, I used to be able to do that too. So how come I have slowed down so much?
The only possibilities I can think of are:
- I just have less time to read.
Back when I used to read several books a week I was a kid/teenager whose only commitments were school/college, which inevitably meant more free time and less pressure. These days I have a full time job which takes up a lot of my time, not to mention a flat to upkeep, some small semblance of a social life and multiple hobbies including writing, blogging and photography. Whilst back then it was unthinkable for me to go a day without reading, these days it does happen occasionally, and I just find that I haven’t had chance to read that day. However, I imagine a lot of readers and bloggers are the same, so why has this slowed me down so much?
- I have less motivation to read.
This, if anything, seems the most likely. My job involves working a lot of weird hours and I am literally stood up for my entire shift, so generally when I get home I just tend to flop on the sofa and eat Doritos until it is time to go to bed (because I’m healthy like that!). I also used to do a lot of my reading before bed, but these days doing that just seems to make me sleepy, so I have to use other forms of entertainment to wind down, and save reading for when I’m fully conscious.
Unfortunately the whole reading/motivation situation is unlikely to get better anytime soon – I’m moving house at the end of the month so I have a whole lot of work to do packing up all my stuff!
- Blogging has put pressure on my reading.
If I’m honest, book reviews have never really been my favourite kind of blog post to write. Trying to actually put my feelings about a book into words can often be a painstaking process, and one that I don’t particularly enjoy. So am I just putting off writing reviews? I don’t feel like this is the case, but I guess it’s worth considering the fact that since starting blogging my reading has slowed down, and I wonder if it’s because part of the aspect of ‘reading for pleasure’ has been taken away seen as I also read to blog about it…but it seems unlikely. I still love reading, and I love blogging, although I guess blogging itself takes away from my actual reading time, and maybe because I’m now analysing books as I’m reading them it is slowing me down?
- The speed at which I can physically read has somehow slowed down.
It surely can’t be possible that the rate at which my brain processes words has just slowed down?
At the end of the day though, does it really matter if I don’t read as fast as I used to, or if I haven’t posted a book review when I wanted to? I guess I’m just worried this gradual slowing down is leading onto some kind of mega reading slump (the last one I had lasted a year, and involved me basically stopping reading entirely!), but I don’t think that’s the case. I still really enjoy reading, and thanks to blogging I really seem to have found the kind of books I love, and there are so many more books I’m excited to read. I guess it is an inevitable part of life as a bookworm that you’ll go through stages where you have less time, or perhaps less motivation to read, but that isn’t necessarily such a terrible thing.
So I’m interested to know, how fast do you read? And have you ever noticed a change or fluctuation in how fast you read?